Monday, 29 March 2010

6th March. The chase is on.

With southerly winds for 2 days and reports of large numbers of SPs moving in the Deir Ezzor area we head south. A quick re-check at Al Howl reveals 3 flocks totalling 68 birds. More Northern Wheatears are evident this morning and Swallows zip through.Over to Ar-Ruweira where a further 12 SPs fly east. At the transmitter tower a small 'fall' has taken place; 2 Robins, an Eastern Black Redstart and a stunning Red-tailed Wheatear.We fortuitously met our friends from yesterday in a petrol station and gave Salem a lift back to his house where we ate a quick lunch outside in the sunshine. Calandra, Crested, Short-toed and Lesser Short-toed Larks scuttled around.

Heading south to Abu Khashab, we stopped and scanned, stopped and scanned, stopped and scanned. 550 Cranes went north, 3 Garganey and 2 Ruff were on a pool, a few Finsch's, Northern and Isabelline Wheatears were noted and a Steppe Buzzard soared above. With the sun sinking and the afternoon looking like an anti-climax, we suddenly stumbled on another 51 SP feeding in a shallow damp wadi. A total of 131 for the day and 229 so far. Tomorrow could be the big day.

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